Add include directories to a target.
target_include_directories(<target> [SYSTEM] [AFTER|BEFORE]
[<INTERFACE|PUBLIC|PRIVATE> [items2...] ...])
BEFORE explicitly, you can select between appending
and prepending, independent of the default.
PRIVATE keywords are required to specify
the scope of the following arguments.
PUBLIC items will populate the
INTERFACE items will populate the
INTERFACE_INCLUDE_DIRECTORIES property of
The following arguments specify include directories.
New in version 3.11: Allow setting
INTERFACE items on IMPORTED targets.
Repeated calls for the same
<target> append items in the order called.
SYSTEM is specified, the compiler will be told the directories
are meant as system include directories on some platforms. This may
have effects such as suppressing warnings or skipping the contained
headers in dependency calculations (see compiler documentation).
Additionally, system include directories are searched after normal
include directories regardless of the order specified.
SYSTEM is used together with
INTERFACE_SYSTEM_INCLUDE_DIRECTORIES target property will be
populated with the specified directories.
target_include_directories may use generator expressions
with the syntax
$<...>. See the
manual for available expressions. See the
for more on defining buildsystem properties.
Specified include directories may be absolute paths or relative paths.
A relative path will be interpreted as relative to the current source
CMAKE_CURRENT_SOURCE_DIR) and converted to an
absolute path before storing it in the associated target property.
If the path starts with a generator expression, it will always be assumed
to be an absolute path (with one exception noted below) and will be used
Include directories usage requirements commonly differ between the build-tree
and the install-tree. The
INSTALL_INTERFACE generator expressions can be used to describe
separate usage requirements based on the usage location. Relative paths
are allowed within the
INSTALL_INTERFACE expression and are
interpreted as relative to the installation prefix. Relative paths should not
be used in
BUILD_INTERFACE expressions because they will not be
converted to absolute. For example:
$<INSTALL_INTERFACE:include/mylib> # <prefix>/include/mylib
Creating Relocatable Packages¶
Note that it is not advisable to populate the
INTERFACE_INCLUDE_DIRECTORIES of a target with absolute paths to the include
directories of dependencies. That would hard-code into installed packages
the include directory paths for dependencies
as found on the machine the package was made on.
INSTALL_INTERFACE of the
INTERFACE_INCLUDE_DIRECTORIES is only
suitable for specifying the required include directories for headers
provided with the target itself, not those provided by the transitive
dependencies listed in its
property. Those dependencies should themselves be targets that specify
their own header locations in
See the Creating Relocatable Packages section of the
cmake-packages(7) manual for discussion of additional care
that must be taken when specifying usage requirements while creating
packages for redistribution.